HAMDEN, Conn. — The feeling was electric.
With the opposing crowds chanting throughout the entire game, by the time the scoreboard showed no time remaining, the Quinnipiac Bobcats prevailed with a 5-2 win over the No. 12 Cornell Big Red in front of a sold-out crowd at the Northford Ice Pavilion Saturday night.
The win was the first-ever for the Bobcats over the Big Red in five chances.
“It’s an exciting win for our young program,” said Quinnipiac head coach Rand Pecknold. “I’m proud of the way that the guys played.”
Cornell struck first just under seven minutes into the first period. After a Dan Travis hooking call, the Big Red went on the power play and Topher Scott redirected home Brendon Nash’s shot from the point past Quinnipiac’s Bud Fisher for the 1-0 lead.
“I was impressed with Cornell,” said Pecknold. “They came and took it to us early.”
But the Bobcats would score the next three goals and never look back again.
Travis avenged his penalty with a goal just over three minutes later. Matt Sorteberg dumped the puck into Cornell’s (6-2-0, 4-2 ECACHL) end and David Marshall picked it up in the corner, skated out and left a drop pass for Travis.
Travis picked up the puck and ripped the shot past Cornell’s Troy Davenport’s glove side to even the score.
With just under a minute remaining in the first, Quinnipiac (7-3-2, 4-1-1 ECACHL) went a man up and took the opportunity to go up 2-1. Brandon Wong won the faceoff to the left of Davenport back to Henningson, who shot low stick-side to light the lamp.
The Bobcats carried that momentum into the second period when Marshall got a goal of his own on the power play. Reid Cashman carried the puck into the zone and fed John Doherty for the shot. Marshall was on the doorstep and put in the rebound for the 3-1 lead.
“We’ve built up some confidence with that stretch on the road,” said Marshall. “We come home and play well and show we can play well on both the road and at home.”
Cornell cut the deficit in half on Michael Kennedy’s third goal of the season. Kennedy skated in through the neutral zone and blasted a shot from the circles that got past Fisher. Doug Krantz and Tyler Mugford were credited with assists on the goal.
But Wong put the game out of reach with his 10th goal of the season, when he picked off a pass and recorded the score.
Cornell had one last chance with a six-on-four advantage with just over two minutes remaining, but Eric Lampe’s empty-netter ended the chance of a comeback.
The Big Red outshot Quinnipiac 29-22, but Fisher played well, making key saves throughout the game to preserve the victory.
“He had a great weekend,” said Pecknold.
Quinnipiac moves into first place in the ECAC Hockey League standings with nine points on the season.
“It certainly is a big win,” said Pecknold. “You have to give credit to Cornell.”